In 2009, I put the Harley in storage in late October after a couple of cold, wet weeks. Of course, then November was absolutely beautiful and I regretted putting it away so soon. So I swore I wasn’t going to park it until the end of November this year.
Well, it was a beautiful fall, but by mid-November it was obvious that it wasn’t really the cold that was interfering with riding, but the short days. I rode as much as I could, even if it was only around town. But by Veterans Day (November 11), I decided that was it. Even if it got absolutely summer-like out, I wasn’t going to be able to take advantage of it anyway.
This winter I decided to store my bike at my friend’s shop (Road Wolf). I wanted to keep it in town and I was hoping to get some work done on it too. Had a nice chat when I dropped it off, but it still feels weird leaving the keys in the ignition and walking away.
So over the winter I’ve had the 10,000-mile service done even though it hasn’t quite gotten there. Seems silly to wait until Spring, take it for two rides and then bring it back in for service. The other thing I desperately want done is to swap out the handlebars. My arms frequently go numb when I’m out for a ride. Worst situation was when I was coming back into town once. Dropped my left hand for a wave and couldn’t get it back up to the handlebars. And of course right about then I’m coming up on a pickup which is slowing down for an intersection. Really needed to get my hand on the clutch. Desperately. Somehow made my dead arm obey, but it was a really dangerous situation. As of today, I’ve ordered some 12-inch mini-apes and I’m looking forward to seeing how much different they are to ride with. A small part of me is worried the bike will be harder to handle, but I do know that the stock buckhorns needed to go.
In one month will be the local bike show. Last year it marked the beginning of the riding season. I hope the same is true this year, but we still have a few feet of snow on the ground and a major flood ahead of us. Time will tell when I will begin riding again. But at least this year I don’t have to wait to have it hauled in from out of town. The first nice day, I can just head over and set it free.
Odometer: 9,276 miles